Sri Lanka coconut plantation profit up

Feb 13, 2009 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s state-owned Chilaw Plantations, which grows coconut, has increased profit by 47 percent to 153.68 million rupees under state management in 2008, a year when commodity prices shot to record highs.

The Strategic Enterprise Management Agency (SEMA), a government agency charged with ensuring state enterprises are run profitably, said it managed to improve yields, income and profits.

This was partly by making efforts to collect ‘fallen nuts’ to avoid costly thefts by providing incentives and rewards to field staff, SEMA said in a report.

“Chilaw Plantations, under government management, recorded the highest ever profit of 153 million rupees in 2008, up to November, without paying private management agent fees,” it said.

The government took back Chilaw Plantations from its private management agent, Wayamba Plantations, in May 2008 given the strategic importance of coconut as a food crop.

SEMA said the government negotiated a compensation package of 124 million rupees paid to Wayamba Plantations for the early termination of the management agreement.

The money came from the savings of Chilaw Plantations and not from the government treasury, it said.

Chilaw Plantation